It's all gotta go somewhere

Dispatch from Loowit Home Room & Art Class

Here is a letter that came last night from Teacher Jackie, outlining this exciting week.

Dear Families,

Happy October All! Last week felt like the Loowits were settling into our routines and responding very well to the curriculum! Reading groups are going strong and we began our FAST (multisensory reading and spelling) program. The students are engaging and sharing thinking much more in math, while strengthening collaboration skills through games and activities. I think the biggest growth thus far in the school year is that the students are building resilance and embracing challenge.
In Thematics we created a historical timeline that will help us understand Vancouver’s early beginnings. To help the students relate personally to the historical events we will be talking about, please talk as a family and choose a personal event that we can add to our timeline. Ideas might include: parent or grandparent birthdates/wedding dates, when you moved into your house, when a parent graduated from high school or college, etc. Tomorrow each child will bring a blank index card home. Please record the family event on the card and be sure to include the year it occurred.
We are looking forward to a very busy week coming up! Here are some highlights looking ahead:
Monday – Tomorrow we will have our first Community Meeting of a series focusing on the Gardner Apple Election. Our version of the election will help students understand the election process, while including them in the decision-making process as we decide on what type of apple trees to replant at school.  The guiding question for the next couple of weeks, How do Groups Make Decisions?, will be explored and reflected upon as we introduce the primary election process. Our Primary Election will allow students to sample six apple varieties: Jonagold, Gala, Braeburn, Fuji, Honey Crisp & Empire. Students will take notes as they sample and then cast a primary ballot. Next week we will further explore our guiding question and reveal the winners of the primaries. In upcoming weeks we will hold student-led educational forums and debates, leading up to the final election on November 7th. You can help your child process this experience by discussing how your family or how groups make decisions.
Tuesday – Loowit’s first field trip of the year – Fort Vancouver, here we come! The purpose of this trip is to help the students actively seek understanding about the origins, functions and impacts that the Hudson’s Bay Company and the fur trade had on the development of Vancouver. We will be leaving school at 9am and spending the morning walking the land bridge and touring the fort. We will have a picnic lunch and then return to Gardner. Please be sure your child brings their booster seat (place under their coat hook area in the hallway), a rain coat, and a lunch to school Tuesday! The weather looks wet and we will be outside most of the time. Thank you to everyone who volunteered to drive on this trip! I will be contacting you separately with addtional information.
Wednesday – Open Choice begins! Designed to give students more choice in their learning, as well as offering a variety of options that incorporate the Multiple Intelligences, this program is loved by students and teachers! Students in Loowit through Tahoma explore, inquire and learn together in mixed-age groupings. Last week students learned about the classes, voted and were informed of their placements (we will review these this week). Open Choice takes place from 12:45 – 1:40 on each of the next four Wednesdays. This round’s selections included: Make Your Own Comic; Creek Running at WSU; Yoga & Mindfullness: Halloween & Day of the Dead Crafts; The Small Things – Investigating the Outdoors with Science Tools; Photography.
Conferences – begin this week and continue next. I would like to meet with each family, so please sign up on the sheet outside the door, or email me and we can arrange a time! Please think about short-term and long-term goals you have for your child.
That is all for now – please get in touch with any questions you have and I hope you have a wonderful week!
And here is a recent post from art teacher Jane, with a wonderful image of D’s first major art achievement of the year: Self Portrait, With Hat.

Greetings from the ART room!

The Loowit art students started the school year drawing self-portraits. This was a fun exercise in which they looked in the mirror and studied the shapes of their faces and observed their facial features. Using their imaginations they topped their heads with a hat of their choice. They added color using watercolor paints.
I look forward to more wonderful artwork from the Loowit artists!


  1. Grandma Beverly

    Such wonderful communication from school! Their curriculum is so polished and webbed together. I love how different areas of study interlock to teach concepts. Our schools once did that but unfortunately lost most of it when study became focused on teaching for the state tests.

    I LOVE Dash’s self portrait! Very detailed. In great proportion. Colorful and fun textures. Impressive with the hat brim peaking out from behind his head. And of course the curls…wonderful blond curls!

  2. Sherry

    Holy Moly, talk about a fun and busy schedule. Can I go to school with him?

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